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Former Illini Meyers Leonard getting second chance in NBA

ESPN: Leonard is signing a 10-day contract with the Bucks.

NBA: New Orleans Pelicans at Miami Heat Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Former Illini star Meyers Leonard is getting a second chance in the NBA after almost two years out of the league.

According to ESPN, the 7-footer is signing a 10-day deal with the Milwaukee Bucks.

Leonard was traded from the Miami Heat and dropped by the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2021 after using an antisemitic slur on a video game livestream.

He first was suspended by the league for a week and paid a $50,000 fine. Later on, no team took a chance on him.

Last month, Leonard spoke with ESPN’s Outside The Lines about the incident.

Leonard, who played for Illinois from 2010-12, has spent time over the past two years working with members of the Jewish community in Florida. He also notably made a visit to Champaign where he spoke with Jewish leaders at the University’s Chabad Jewish center.

Leonard grew up in Robinson, Illinois, and was a first-round pick by the Trail Blazers, where he spent the first seven years of his career.